B.C. to raise minimum employment age from 12 to 16 this fall

July 26, 2021

British Columbia is making changes to its employment standards legislation this fall, raising the general working age for young people from 12 to 16 years old.

The changes will also outline the kinds of “light work” jobs that people under 16 can do with permission from a parent or guardian.

The new rules will take effect on Oct. 15 and will bring the province in line with international youth employment standards, the labour ministry said in a statement Wednesday. The delay in implementing the changes is intended to allow employers and young workers to adjust to the new requirements.

“Work experience can be a rewarding growth opportunity for young people, but it should never compromise their safety,” B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains said in the statement. “We know that most employers make safety their top priority for all their workers, and these changes clarify what types of employment are age-appropriate for young workers.”

The province says workers aged 14 and 15 will be able to do “light work” with the permission of a parent or guardian.

Source: Vancouver Island Free Daily